Ramstein focuses on suicide prevention

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Jimmie D. Pike
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Members of the 86th Airlift Wing came together to highlight suicide prevention and awareness for Suicide Prevention Month with two major events on base.

The first event was held Sept. 22 at the Kaiserslautern Military Community Center and featured different base agencies that can provide assistance to members seeking help.

“There are multiple sources available to our community if anyone is thinking of suicide,” said Tech. Sgt. Lizmarie Linares, 86th Medical Operations Squadron flight chief of physical therapy. “The KMCC Suicide Prevention Fair featured booths from military family life consultants, the Airman and Family Readiness Center, 86th Airlift Wing chaplain’s office and mental health to name a few.”

After giving Airmen a chance to get acquainted with the sources available to help in times of need, another event was put on Sept. 28, at the Hercules Theater on Ramstein.

The event featured a former Air Force pilot who spoke about his brief run-in with suicidal thoughts after an accident that grounded his career, and how he reached out for help.

“One common theme between those who come to mental health for help is courage,” said Capt. Bethany Casper, 86th MDOS suicide prevention program manager. “Whether it be the person seeking help who reached out, or someone who knew the person reached out for them. Someone had the courage to reach out and seek help.”

If a person seems to be displaying unhealthy tendencies, Airmen should use the Ask, Care and Escort method to make sure the member is okay.

“Suicide Prevention is a shared responsibility,” said Casper. “It’s not something we do alone, it’s something we do together.”

For more information on suicide prevention and available sources, please contact the Ramstein mental health office at DSN 479-2390.